Set your thermostat no higher than 68 degrees and be sure to lower the temperature when you go to bed or are not at home. This saves money and keeps you warm.
Photo by Touchstone Energy Cooperatives
Between holiday houseguests and shorter, colder days, electric bills tend to climb in the winter. Read on for ways to save energy when the temperature drops.
Lower your thermostat to 68 degrees (or lower): If you decrease the temperature by just one degree, you can save up to 5 percent on heating costs. Consider a programmable thermostat that you can set to lower the temperature when away from home and increase before you come back.
Adjust blinds and curtains: Keep them open to let in sunlight during the day, and close at night to keep heat inside and protect from drafts.
Reduce hot water temperatures: Heating water accounts for 12 percent of the average home’s energy use. Set your water heater’s thermostat to 120 degrees or lower—that’s usually sufficient for a household’s hot-water needs.
Consider replacing old appliances, doors and windows with Energy Star-rated models: Energy-Star-rated items meet special efficiency standards set by the federal government.
You can save about 15 percent of your normal energy use with these appliances and get better insulation on doors and windows for the price you pay.
Free your vents: HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) systems will have to work twice as hard if vents are blocked by rugs, furniture or doors. Keep vents clear for proper air flow.
A special holiday tip: Use LED lights to decorate. They’re up to 75 percent more energy efficient than traditional incandescent lights and last much longer—but check for an Energy Star rating before you buy.